Belfast Telegraph

Funding boost for island improvement projects

Schemes to be supported include a helipad and road upgrades.

Over 1 million euro has been sanctioned to carry out improvement works on various islands around the country.

Minister of State for the Irish Language, the Gaeltacht and the Islands, Joe McHugh, announced on Sunday the grant of 1,073,863 euro to carry out upgrade work.

The grants have been sanctioned for Sligo, Cork, Mayo, Donegal and Galway county councils.

Projects being funded include the provision of a helipad on Inishturk to provide support for the island population.

The islands involved are Inishmulclohy (Coney Island) in County Sligo; Bear Island, Long Island, Whiddy Island, Dursey Island and Sherkin Island in County Cork; Inishturk, Claggan and Clare Island in County Mayo; Arainn Mhor, Oilean an Bhraighe and Tory Island in County Donegal; and Inishmore, Inisheer and Inishbofin in County Galway.

The funds will also support the upgrading of 21 roads on islands along the coast.

Mr McHugh said: “Today’s announcement shows the interest my department and the Government have in fostering sustainable communities on the off-shore islands.

“As part of the Government’s National Development Plan my department will be investing 27 million euro in island marine infrastructure over the next 10 years.

“These kinds of investments are about improving the lives of islanders, improving accessibility, investing in the future of island communities and in works that will sustain and develop vital tourism offerings.

“Our islands are truly at the heart of what is best loved and admired about Irish culture and these kind of investments demonstrate how highly we value these communities.”

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